“Can we make that more interactive?” is a question that you probably hear a lot about your eLearning content. Branching video is one common way to make video interactive. The learner watches part of a video and then is presented with two clickable buttons that each go to a different part of the video.
With the rise of virtual reality and 360-degree video, a new form of interactivity is possible. eLearning Brothers continues to add 360-degree stock video to our Stock Asset Library to aid developers in making use of this new technology.
360-degree video simultaneously records viewpoints in all directions from a stationary location. 360-degree video and VR let viewers interact with and experience the content, instead of just sitting back to watch. These new video options offer eLearning developers a prime opportunity to increase learner engagement.
The difference between 360-degree video and virtual reality videos
Both 360 and VR are shot using cameras that record in all 360 degrees. Watching 360-degree video does not require a headset, while VR does. With 360-degree video, you click and drag around (with a mouse or your finger) to explore different directions of the video. To watch a virtual reality video, you must cover your entire field of vision with a viewing device like a headset, or head-mounted display (HMD).
By nature, all virtual reality videos are shot in a way that lets you see 360-degrees around you. However, because a headset or viewing device is required for virtual reality and not required for 360, 360-degree video cannot always be categorized as VR.
360-degree video in action
I have a friend who travels the world fairly regularly and is always posting 360-degree photos on Facebook of gorgeous landscapes and exotic places. Hypothetically...If I posted this 360-video clip from our Stock Asset Library, do you think anyone would believe I had really shot it?
Aside from inducing jealousy among your Facebook friends, there are real-world learning applications of 360-degree technology.
I found this interesting study done by educators and agriculture specialists at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln on how using 360-degree video and VR enabled innovation in certain training situations (e.g., field equipment operation) that had not been possible before. Here’s an excerpt from the study:
Education professionals at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln hosted field days for agricultural producers, consultants, and service providers in 2015 and 2016. Crop canopy sensors mounted on a high-clearance applicator for nitrogen fertilizer management were demonstrated at the field days. Logistically, it was not possible for field day attendees to ride in the applicator and see firsthand how the technology worked.
However, by using 360-degree video and virtual reality headsets, the educators were able to allow field day attendees to experience the fertilizer management technology operation in real time. Attendees wore virtual reality headsets and by turning their heads in a natural manner were able to "look around" the high-clearance applicator cab as it moved through the field. Audio narration instructed viewers on where to focus their gazes to see specific items.
Extension professionals noted that when attendees had the opportunity to view the 360-degree video prior to the formal presentation, they asked more informed questions and seemed to have a better grasp of the overall system. This experience demonstrated that 360-degree technology is a promising tool for engaging learners and bringing real-world experiences into a classroom setting.
Cool stuff, right?
If you don’t have a video camera capable of recording 360-degree video, never fear! We just added tons of new 360-degree stock videos to the eLearning Brothers Stock Asset Library.
Check them all out with a free 7-day trial of the entire eLearning Brothers Asset Library!